Job Opportunities for Teens

Seattle Parks and Recreation and other City agencies provide several different job programs and job types for teens, most in the summer. Some pay by the hour; for others, teens work for a stipend and/or service hours. Whether they're indoor or outdoor jobs, getting ready to go to work is an important step in your development into an adult. So whether you want to become a lifeguard or do physical work on trails and other park sites, give this page a look.

The purpose of offering jobs for Seattle teens is to provide you with personal growth opportunities, get you involved with your community, teach basic employment skills, and of course pay you some money!

If you are interested in receiving updates on future youth employment program opportunities through Seattle Parks and Recreation, please check back on this page for current information. To receive updates in the future please contact: Teen.programs@seattle.gov and ask to be added to our list.

Programs recruiting now: Fall 2021

Youth Outdoor Leadership Opportunities (YOLO)

Do you like the outdoors and think you might want a job next summer working in outdoor recreation? SPR's Environmental Sustainability and Engagement Unit is recruiting 16-22 year olds for a paid internship that will train and mentor youth and young adults this fall and winter to prepare you for a summer job with Seattle Parks and Recreation in 2022. This program is called Youth Outdoor Leadership Opportunities (YOLO) and participants receive paid training, mentoring and work experience in the field of outdoor recreation (you will learn to lead groups in hiking, camping, boating, rock climbing, challenge course facilitation, nature walks and more) with pathways to future employment with Seattle Parks and Recreations.

The Application is now open and the first review will be on September 22nd, 2021. Priority will be given to BIPOC, English Language Learners (ELL) and those from low-income households. YOLO is a yearlong, three-part program that runs from October 2021 through September 2022. More details about the program can be found here

Watch the application video to find out more!

several teens in hard hads and climbing gear in the forest outside, facing the camera

Temporary Lifeguards

Seattle Parks and Recreation is currently recruiting Temporary Lifeguards for eight indoor pools in Seattle. Current Red Cross Lifeguard certification is required, and candidates must be at least 16 years old to apply. Part time work hours are available. Information on how to apply and how to get certified is available here

These opportunities are on hold in 2021 due to the pandemic:

YES! Youth Engaged in Service

YES! is a job readiness and leadership development program for youth ages 13-19 that will connect you to a broad range of service and training opportunities preparing you for the working world. YES participants can work individually or in small teams on a project and will be partnered with an adult mentor and support the operations and programming at a Seattle Parks and Recreation facility, park or program. YES is inclusive and will help build skills and confidence that extend into the school year and beyond. By participating a minimum of 120 program hours, 60 service hours can go towards your high school graduation requirement and for the remaining 60 service hours, receive a stipend of $150.

Questions? Please contact: teen.programs@seattle.gov. Please sign up for the email distribution list to receive program applications and other information automatically.  2020 Applications coming in spring.

Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR)

The Youth Participatory Action Research Team provides a unique and exciting opportunity for young people to gain employment skills, understand important social issues, and work collaboratively to make change in their communities. YPAR participants will work alongside teammates to share and learn about the basics of race & equity in our society.  All YPAR participants will work as a team to create art and media projects while researching important social justice issues. At the end of the program, each participant will pursue an original community-based research project on the topic of their choice which will showcase what they have learned throughout the program. All participants will display their projects at a special community event.

All participants will receive 57.5 community service hours and a stipend of $650 for 50 hours of paid work, resulting in a total of 107.5 program hours.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Attending a minimum of 107.5 hours of approved program time
  • Actively participating in all group activities including discussions, workshops, art projects, writing assignments, off-site visits, etc.
  • Creating an individual project for final exhibition to educate the community and demonstrate personal learning
  • Completing all independent assignments promptly
  • Coming to each program session with an open mind and willingness to learn
  • Treating all fellow participants, mentors, and guests respectfully
  • Maintaining a positive and professional work environment

Desired Qualifications:

  • No previous experience necessary
  • Interest in learning about racial, social, and environmental justice issues
  • Desire to educate others and work to make change in your communities
  • Willingness to contribute ideas and try new things
  • Ability to contribute effectively and respectfully in a team environment

Questions? Please contact teen.programs@seattle.gov. Please sign up for the email distribution list to receive program applications and other information automatically. Applications for the 2020 Winter-Spring Session are now closed.

Student Teen Employment Preparation - STEP

STEP is a project-based job readiness program that has teams of high school students ages 14-19 addressing a community need. STEP incorporates activities and training focused on job readiness, soft skills, life skills and leadership.

Participants involved in this intensive summer program will be working collaboratively and directly with the community. Previous examples of projects include: offering summer enrichment activities at parks, organizing and hosting community events, mixed media projects, environmental related projects, and creating public awareness presentations.

As part of a STEP team, participants will:

  • Meet new friends and network with mentors in the community
  • Work collaboratively on a team
  • Gain leadership, life, and pre-employment skills

Participants must successfully complete 120 program hours to be eligible for a $599 stipend. *This is an inclusive program, students in Transition programs qualify to apply.  2020 Applications coming in spring.

Summer of Service (SOS)

The SOS program is for students entering 7th, 8th, or 9th grade in Fall 2018. The SOS program will help you make a difference in your community while gaining leadership and work skills. Participants will collaborate on a team-based project and learn about the surrounding community and environment.

Participants involved in this intensive summer program will learn about issues affecting their communities and then design their own project to take action. Previous projects have included: waste reduction and composting, organizing and implementing community events and habitat and trail restoration.

As part of a team, participants will work collaboratively while gaining leadership and pre-employment skills.

  • Meet new friends and network with mentors in the community
  • Work collaboratively on a team
  • Gain leadership, life, and pre-employment skills
  • Take fun and educational field trips around the city and in nature

Upon completion of SOS, you will receive a $150 stipend. Students entering 9th grade in the fall can also accumulate 15 hours of community service towards their high school graduation requirement.

Questions? Please contact: teen.programs@seattle.gov. Please sign up for the email distribution list to receive program applications and other information automatically. 2020 Applications coming in spring.

Youth Career Training Program

The Youth Career Training Program is currently undergoing a refresh. Program information will be posted HERE as soon as it is available. This program serves young people from 14-24 years old.

If you have a question about this program and/or wish to host/mentor youth as part of this program please contact teen.programs@seattle.gov or (206) 684-4575

Additional Summer Opportunities

Are you exploring other options this summer? Please back in spring for the Summer 2020 Job Resources list that includes information about additional opportunities you may be interested in. These opportunities all have different eligibility/applications requirements, timelines and experiences so if any sound interesting, please reach out to the organizations directly.

Seattle Public Library Student Assistant Program

The Student Assistant Program is an exciting opportunity for teens and young adults to gain job experience, develop new skills, and work with a diverse group of people at the public library. While attending school, Student Assistants work between 12 and 15 hours per week at the Central Library or one of 26 Library branch locations. For more teen jobs with the Seattle Public Library, check out their teen jobs site.

Basketball Scorers and Timers

During basketball season (Fall-Winter), starting as early as October, community centers look for scorers and timers. Candidates must attend a mandatory training and need to be able to work on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from the months of January through March. Basketball officials make $20 an hour to start. Scorers and timers are paid on a site by site basis. If you are interested, please ask at your local community center.

Seattle Goodwill

Seattle Goodwill offers some amazing things - job training, education, GED prep, career pathways, and cashiering/customer service/computer/retail classes. Check them out on their website or call (206) 329-1000 or email goodwill@seattlegoodwill.org.